Reviews of Lion Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
The place to go for lions
This was my 3rd and final lodge in Zambia.
The lodge is beautifully designed with a combination of wood and brightly colored fabrics.
The setting is magnificent with plenty of puku, bush backs, impala, baboons, kudu and elephants wandering about in the landscape just outside the main dining area/room verandas. I even heard a lion during the morning hours last night.
I was put in the honeymoon suite which offers a nice corner view. However, it was probably the smallest of my three lodges and couldn't compete with the Puku Ridge view.
Our guide, Hendrix, knows the area and is eager to please you with your first lion sighting.
No better place for lions. In my first 24 hours, I saw two large prides of lions (more than 10 lions each) and 4 adult males. I also saw a herd of maybe 500 buffalo which offered the opportunity to witness both a pretty intense fight between two of them and a number of lions stalking them in an unsuccessful attempt at a kill. Of course, all the other animals are here as well although much of the focus is on the lions. It seems like there may be somewhat fewer elephants, giraffes and zebra here than further south.
The lodge has a communal orientation with all guests eating together with the hosts and guides at a large dining table in the main veranda and once a week all the guests meet at a common spot on the river for their sundowner. A drum calls guests to meals and tea time, which is a delightful component of "lodge life." The communal feel is different than at Nkwali, however. Nkwali is a bit more relaxed with greater camaraderie across the staff and between the guests. Here, people put on dress shirts for dinner and cross group conversation was more forced.
Why stay: groups of lions doing their thing! Fits image of what a high-end African safari lodge experience would be like
Dislike: Across my entire safari, Most lodges employed white foreigners to serve as host or Camp Manager. Given my orientations, I would have preferred local people to be in senior staff positions. Lion Camp, in particular, felt a bit colonial. There wasn't much camaraderie between the foreign managers and the local staff and, while it is difficult to explain, it felt like the staff held more of a secondary status. This made me a bit uncomfortable.
Beautiful camp hidden in quiet part of SL
Lion Camp is a great place hidden in the northern part of the South Luangwa Park. The camp has a fine ambiance, nice and friendly staff and is beautifully decorated. The rooms are quiet, lovely designed and have a great view on the lagoon filled with water. This means that you will see wildlife every moment of the day. Elephants, hippo’s (and others) can even wander through the camp. And if you are lucky a kill is made on the plains in front of the camp. Food is amazing also for vegetarians as myself, not only diversity but also the use of spices and fresh ingredients.
Dining together of visitors, guides and staff makes a nice mix of people and stories from all over the world.
Being on safari here you will meet no people from other camps which means you are completely alone in the bush, at least I was. Guiding is done with expertise and very pleasant. You can choose between walking and driving, also night drives are made and they are very special.
I saw lions and leopards with cubs, elephants, giraffes, lot of birds and all kind of antelopes.
The team of Expert Africa is not too keen on this camp as I read in their own review, I think it is time for a new perspective and hope they pay the camp another visit. I am happy to have been here and would like to visit again if possible. Thanks Lion Camp for the pleasant stay.
Wonderful Safari at Lion Camp
The location of Lion Camp is wonderful. It overlooks a watercourse that was visited throughout the day (this was October when the water in the Luangwa River was low and occupied only a small portion of the riverbed) by wildlife and there was a constant stream of animals arriving and departing in the middle of the day between our game drives (except a pair of hippos who spent our first 48 hours almost motionless in the water directly in front of our chalet) including lions and elephants with their calves. We even had lions wandering through the camp for most of one night - the chalets are elevatd on stilts and linked by a walkway to the main facilities.
The game drives and the guides were excellent.They matched or exceeded our safari experience in several other countries but with far fewer vehicles than say the Masai Mara. At most there were 4 vehicles, 3 from Lion Camp and one other at sightings, due to the camp being further from the entrance to the park than most camps. We frequently saw a large pride of lions with their cubs, resting or chewing on the remains of buffalo, on two consecutive nights we saw a leopard and on our last morning we saw one in a tree and then jumping down. Also a pack of hyenas and lots of hippos in the river.
The chalets are fine, comfortable beds, well furnished, a deck overlooking the watercourse, loo with a door and washing facilities and shower tucked away reasonably private - we were father and daughter.
The staff were welcoming and friendly and the atmosphere was great. You soon get to know the other guests at mealtimes and over a few drinks which are readily available in the all-included price. The food is of a high standard.
Through Expert Africa we had arranged for the the camp to send a taxi to collect us from Chipata, some 3 hours to reach Mfuwe near the entrance to the park. I confirmed the collection arrangements the day before and all went well.This was an interesting journey through the countryside and many villages, and then the camp collected us from Mfuwe for the longish journey to the camp. Even from the road through the park we saw elephants, giraffes and a pride of 15 lions resting by the roadside after a buffalo kill the previous evening.
Lion Camp review
Great location, liked the raised walkways. Taking the meals together at one big table worked most of the time but not when we were swamped by an American religious group.
The walking safari was rather boring.
This was our best experience. We liked the design that brought everyone together in a central core, the offer of drinks upon our return from a drive, that all guests ate together at a common table, and that the guides ate with us. All these factors contributed to a most enjoyable experience
I don't know the degree to which the long serving manager had contributed to this, I presume a great deal, but she was only peripherally present for us during our stay. A great deal of the present success I suspect must be attributed to the Australian Operations manager who was always there and worked very hard.